Title page for ETD etd-04182002-125854

Type of Document Dissertation
Author Schultz, Karen Kennedy
URN etd-04182002-125854
Title What do Master Clinical (Experiential Teachers do When Teaching Clinically?
Degree PhD
Department Human Development
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Boucouvalas, Marcie Committee Chair
Cline, Marvin Gerald Committee Member
Duffy, Joanne Committee Member
Morris, Linda E. Committee Member
Wiswell, Albert W. Committee Member
  • teachable moment
  • clinical teaching
  • master teacher
  • experiential teaching
Date of Defense 2002-03-20
Availability unrestricted
What do Master Clinical (Experiential) Teachers do When Teaching Clinically?

Karen Kennedy Schultz


An urgent need exists for balance between students learning the theory of clinical practice and becoming an expert. While theory is taught in the didactic setting, it is the experiential setting where the mastery of the clinical teacher is demonstrated. What does the master clinical teacher do that makes the student’s learning experience so significant? One must recognize the moment, capture the learning opportunity, and draw the student in so that learning can occur. Effective clinical teaching is paramount in creating empowered students and practitioners.

This qualitative case study of a doctoral pharmacy program identified two master clinical preceptors and shadowed one in a hospital and the other in a retail pharmacy. Interactions between clinical preceptors and students were captured through direct observation, audio-tape, and complemented with in-depth interviews. Content analysis identified emerging themes yielding an emerging model of master clinical teaching, illuminating teachable moments between student and clinical preceptor, and the manner in which they interacted with each other and the clinical environment.

The model highlights an approach for making the critical time on clinical rotations as effective as possible and offers a practical means to study interactions between students and preceptors, discerning those that lead to teachable moments. Features of the teachable moments are identified. Although expertise cannot be taught, current and future clinical teachers can use this study to improve their teaching and effectiveness in clinical teaching practice. The methodology of this study can be applied to future studies in the same discipline, other rotations, or other disciplines.

This study augmented the literature in qualitative research in pharmacy education for clinical practice by 1) utilizing a methodology that could be used in future studies 2) identifying features of teachable moments in the interactions of clinical preceptors and students 3) exploring how the clinical preceptors dealt with the changing environment of their clinical teaching 4) offering an emerging model to guide clinical preceptors for making the critical clinical teaching time as effective as possible.

Future studies could utilize this emerging model to gain further insight on clinical teaching practices thus increasing the expertise of clinical teaching.

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